New Delhi: After losing four matches on the trot, many have started asking if the Indian team in Australia has missed the services of Suresh Raina. If missing him was a real problem, then, accommodating the experienced player will be a even bigger problem, considering the many existing marked preferences in the line-up.
Raina, along with Yuvraj Singh, Harbhajan Singh and Ashish Nehra, will join the Indian team Down Under for the three-match Twenty20 International series, which will serve as the preparatory tour ahead of March-April's ICC World T20.
But with an unsettled batting line-up, especially the ones in the middle, Raina's arrival will put the team in a spot. Where will Raina bat? This is the obvious question everyone is asking. And what about Yuvraj Singh?
Rightly, the 29-year-old from Muradnagar has expressed his concerns, and he wants a clear communication from the team management on his batting position.
"It would be better if they (team management) can tell me at least 10 overs before (I got out to bat) about my batting position. It is important to know your strengths. It helps in formulating your own plans as well. If they can tell me before the game or during the game, it helps in planning the innings in a better way," Raina told mid-day.
Unlike the Punjab south-paw, the Uttar Pradesh captain is expected to draft into the paying XI in the very first match itself on the Republic Day, which the Aussies will also celebrate as their own Australia Day, at Adelaide.
Raina, who has scored plenty of runs batting at number 3 in the Indian Premier League, will not get to bat at his preferred position for the national team. The spot virtually belongs to Virat Kohli.
I would love to bat at No 3. I have always batted at No 3 in the Indian Premier League. I am the highest run-getter in that position (471 in 15 international innings),” added Raina.
Then, if the recent trend of skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni batting at no. 4 continues, Raina will bat at no. 5. And that's not even a certainty, if Yuvraj plays.